A student at Alamo Heights High School in Texas who committed suicide was a bullying victim, his brother said.
— SAFAfamily (@SAFAfamily) January 8, 2016
David Molak, 16, was a sophomore at the San Antonio school, his brother said in a now-viral Facebook post.
“In today’s age, bullies don’t push you into lockers, they don’t tell their victims to meet them behind the school’s dumpster after class,” Cliff Molak, 24, wrote. “They cower behind user names and fake profiles from miles away constantly berating and abusing good, innocent people.”
Alamo Heights Independent School District Superintendent Kevin Brown told the Express News that he’s stunned by Molak’s death.
“We will be looking at the facts as they become available to us and we will take very strong and appropriate action,” he said.
San Antonio police said Molak hung himself in his family’s back yard and was found on Monday morning. The Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office said it was a suicide, according to the paper.
Cliff Molak said his brother was a fitness enthusiast, Spurs fan, and an Eagle Scout.
In describing what happened, Cliff said David was subjected to a series of text messages from between six and 10 bullies, receiving comments that berated him.
“My first response to him was ‘These kids suck, that’s really the best insult they can come up with?'” he said, recalling what he told his brother. “I thought he would laugh but he just stared off into distance and you could see his pain.”
Molak described the pain his brother was experiencing further in the Facebook post:
“I saw the pain in Davids eyes three nights ago as he was added to a group text only to be made fun of and kicked out two minutes later. I spoke to him right after to comfort him and he didn’t even hear me. He stared off into the distance for what seemed like an hour. I could feel his pain. It was a tangible pain. He didn’t even have the contact information of any of the eight members who started the group text. It is important to note David had been enduring this sort of abuse for a very long time.”
Molak said the bullies went after him for no reason.
“He did not do anything to them besides having an attractive girlfriend. … They crushed his spirit and took away his motivation to do anything,” he explained.
Molak said there was one particular teen who was the ringleader of his brother’s bullying.
“What happened to my beloved brother was a tragedy. A tragedy set into motion by a boy whom I will not further empower by naming,” he added.
“The main message I want to get across to as many people as I can is this all comes down to character – to end bullying, you’ve got to start at the ground level,” Molak explained, according to MySanAntonio.com. “Parents and the school system need to teach their kids about the realities of bullying and character, it’s the fundamental way to end all sorts of bullying and discrimination.”
The government website StopBullying.gov says that cyberbulling–like what happened to Molak–is on the rise.
“Examples of cyberbullying include mean text messages or emails, rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites, and embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or fake profiles,” it says.
The website adds that it “can happen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and reach a kid even when he or she is alone. It can happen any time of the day or night.”
“Cyberbullying messages and images can be posted anonymously and distributed quickly to a very wide audience. It can be difficult and sometimes impossible to trace the source.”
“Deleting inappropriate or harassing messages, texts, and pictures is extremely difficult after they have been posted or sent.”